The reviews for the 2012 Apple TV have started hitting the web, and according to its reviewers, the device looks like a win for Apple.
While the newest version of the set-top box shares form-factor and many of the same features as its predecessor, it adds an updated processor, 1080p video streaming and iCloud support.
The 2012 Apple TV also has a new interface that makes it look and feel a little more like an iOS device. “The general interface is smartly designed and reasonably easy to use, especially in comparison to other products on the market. On many devices, it’s not immediately obvious how to search for videos or find the Netflix app, but the Apple TV couldn’t be more intuitive. It definitely passes the babysitter test — hand someone the remote, and they’ll immediately be able to do everything the Apple TV can do,” says The Verge.
The new 1080p support is what made the 2012 Apple TV worth the upgrade for Jim Dairymple of The Loop: “Having 1080p video on my 60-inch HDTV is magnificent. I’ve been watching movies and trailers all week and the experience of watching a movie in 1080p that you are streaming from Apple is incredible. On my network, the movie starts almost instantly, so I don’t have any lag time to download. I walk in, choose a video and watch it.”
Dairymple is also a fan of the new iCloud support “The Apple TV is the epitome of convenience. With iCloud, I have access to all of my iTunes Match music and videos, so I don’t need to connect to a computer anymore. I can purchase movies, TV shows and I can watch content from Netflix. That’s perfect.”
Despite the updates, Macworld’s Jason Snell points out that the 2012 Apple TV is really just an updated version of the model currently on the market: “Beyond support for 1080p, there’s not a lot to say about this new Apple TV. It’s basically the second-generation 720p model, but with a faster processor to support playback of higher-resolution videos. The star of the show is Apple TV Software 5.0, which is also available as a free update for the 720p model.”
While Snell didn’t have any complaints about the Apple TV hardware, he did have an issue with its lack of third-party content providers. “Apple’s got this App Store thing down. Why not provide a third-party developer kit and an app store for other purveyors of Internet content? It would only broaden the device’s appeal, and would make a dent in one of the major advantages of Roku’s line of video players.”
The new Apple TV is priced at $99, the same as its predecessor.